Posts tagged #enjoy the moments

Jackie's Journey "How Do Your Kids See You?"

                                                          "How Do Your Kids See You?"

                                                         "How Do Your Kids See You?"

Our children, whatever their age, have an image of us.  We think we are projecting a certain picture of who we are; yet, their perception of us may be, and usually is, totally different!   “At 4 years of age…mommy can do anything!  At 8 years…Mom knows a whole lot!  At 12…mother doesn’t really know quite everything and at 14…Naturally, Mother doesn’t know she doesn’t know everything.  At 16…Mother? She’s hopelessly old-fashioned.  At 18…That old woman?  She’s way out of date!  At 25…Well, she might know a little bit.  At 35…Hey, before we decide, let’s get Mom’s opinion.  At 45…wonder what Mom would have thought about it.  At 65…Wish I could talk it over with Mom.’ 

If I were to ask you…

“What are the five most important needs of your child…

Would you know??

What an obligation we moms have to keep the line of communication open without needlessly hindering our ability to do so!  When I think back to the many positive influences in my life, I recognize that one of the greatest gifts I received was the way my mother worked to keep that communication line open so that the four of us could receive the discipline and correction we desperately needed to prepare us for adulthood.

There are, of course, common ways that parents use to hinder this process and cause children to withdraw their spirit.  

 Do any of these apply to you?

What if:

1)   The model is anger in the responses to life’s situations? Proverbs 22:24,25

2)   We are inconsistent in discipline or discipline in anger?  Ecclesiastes 8: 11; Psalm 6: 1; 38

3)   We have double - standards? Matthew 23: 1-4; Philippians 4:9

4)   We are not living in marital harmony. Gen. 2: 24

5)   We do not admit when we are wrong.  Mathew 5:23-26; Job 32:2; Jas.5:16

6)   We constantly find fault.  Job 32: 2,3

7)   We reverse our God-given roles.  Ephesians 5:22-24; Genesis 3:16

8)   We compare our child to others.  II Corinthians 10: 12

9)   We are not affirming our child. II Corinthians 2: 6-8; Revelation 2,3

10)  We are calling our child names. Ephesians 4:29

11)   We fail to keep our promises.  Matthew 5:37; Colossians 3: 9; Psalm 15:4

12)   We scold our child in front of others.  Matthew 18: 15; John 21:15-17

13)   We fail to take time to daily read the spirit of our child.  Ephesians 5: 18

14)   We’re being to strict.  James 3:17

15)   We’re giving too much freedom.  Proverbs 29:15; Galatians 4:1,2

16)   We are thoughtlessly making fun of our child.  Job 17: 1,2

17)  We’re not listening to our child’s opinion or his/her side of the story.  Proverbs 18: 13,17

18)  We are abusive physically, emotionally, verbally? I Tim. 3:3; Titus 1:7; Numbers 22

19)  We are having unrealistic expectations of our child.  I Corinthians 13:11

All of these (and more) cause our child to withdraw his spirit and to be reluctant to communicate with us.   Discipling (mentoring, teaching, nurturing, training, etc.) our children means more than just leading moral lives.  It means spending time with them so they see how we live out the reality of our Christian life.

Are we:

 -Offering Hope by our Godly Walk and Sacrifice

-Instilling Respect for Authority

-Teaching Personal responsibility (no victim mentality!)

-Correcting Fairly

-Modeling Forgiveness and Respect for others

-Being the Example (or being an excuse for bad behavior!)

-Spending Time cultivating Connections and Communication?

 What image of us does our child see?

 “…get wisdom, discipline and understanding.  The father of a righteous child (man) has great joy; he who has a wise child (son) delights in him.   May your father and mother be glad; may she who gave you birth rejoice…” Proverbs 23:23b-25

Do your children bring you joy?

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~Jackie Johnson - I am a former tribal missionary to the Kuna Indians on the Colombian border in Central America.  Fluent in several languages, my husband and I currently pastor a Spanish-speaking church in Southern California.  My passion is discipling and equipping dedicated young women for life, marriage, motherhood, and beyond. I am the mother of two daughters and the grandmother of three Princesses and four young Knights. 

Jackie's Journey "Recipe for a Miserable Holiday!"

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 “It is not only the most difficult thing to know yourself, but the most inconvenient one, too.” H. W. Shaw   Mostly because we do everything possible to avoid being known…really known!   Being honest with others or ourselves is an unwelcome exercise we practice every time we are in an uncomfortable or awkward space…whether outside our comfort zone alone or facing an unfamiliar group.

There are so many articles written this time of year because the holidays are symptomatically filled with houses full of family fun and activity or houses empty, full of loneliness.  Some houses are a combination of both!  Misery is an equal opportunity venture.  

There is a tried and true recipe for its development.  It goes like this…all you have to do is:

Think about yourself.

Talk about yourself.

Use I as often as possible.

Mirror yourself continually in the opinion of others.

Listen greedily to what people say about you.

Expect to be appreciated.

Be suspicious.

Be jealous and envious.

Be sensitive to slights.

Never forgive a criticism.

Trust nobody but yourself.

Insist on consideration and respect.

Demand agreement with your own views on everything.

Sulk if people are not grateful to you for favors shown them.

Never forget a service you may have rendered.

Be on the lookout for a good time for yourself.

Shirk your duties if you can.

Do as little a possible for others.

Demand your entitlements

Love yourself supremely.

Be selfish.

(From Apples of Gold)

Sound like anyone you know?

Whenever you are selfishly looking out for your own interests, you have only one person working for you…yourself!  When you reach out to help a dozen other people with their needs, you have a dozen people working with you.  Wm. B. Gwen, Jr. 

We have been given the key to a recipe for happiness, joy, and contentment.

Do you want it?  

Here it is:

“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit.  Rather, in humility, value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you looking to the interest of others.”  Phil. 2: 3-4

Losing our lives in others for their success comes with the promise that we will find the abundant life.    Since it is impossible to serve others and be selfish at the same, it requires a willful choice!

The holiday season brings perfect opportunities to create a new, tried and true, recipe…one that will not only benefit others but will profit our families and us. Inviting and accepting new ways to get outside our comfy box and catch a glimpse of others who are needing a “hand up”, a loving touch from the Master, an encouraging word and the hope of our redeeming Savior is the first step.  This is the compensatory recipe that can, by choosing, be written on our hearts during this time of year that we set aside to remember the reason God sent His Son to us.

Which will it be…

 A recipe for joy and blessing or

A recipe for misery and disaster??

jackie BLOG PIC.jpg

~Jackie Johnson - I am a former tribal missionary to the Kuna Indians on the Colombian border in Central America.  Fluent in several languages, my husband and I currently pastor a Spanish-speaking church in Southern California.  My passion is discipling and equipping dedicated young women for life, marriage, motherhood, and beyond. I am the mother of two daughters and the grandmother of three Princesses and four young Knights. 

The Days are Long, the Years are Short!

As I walk into my laundry room, pencil lines mark the time. We have measured each of my kids over their lifetime on the door. Some of the rough lines are over my head now. I gaze at the ones at my knees. Remember when?

My children are all growing up . . . little by little . . . day by day. The wall shows me the progress – the years are represented.

When they were little, people used to say, “Enjoy this time! It goes by so quickly!”

Somewhere between the dirty diapers and sleepless nights I heard “them”, but it seemed so impossible to revel in those days. For I don’t function well without sleep and I am more of a task-master than a lover of all. So motherhood with all of its daily challenges became more of a checklist of things to do than a season to enjoy.

As more children came, the minutes were swallowed up by the fleeting hours of the day. My to-do list became longer as they grew from toddler to child.  We continued to mark their growth with pencil marks on the wall.

And now some of them beginning to drive. One of my children is just about to bloom into a woman. I spend my days driving all four from activities to classes and shuffling through the many needs each has. After all these years, I am only doing the best I can with this parenting job. I have certainly not arrived. I have learned to love more and be more patient. Is it enough?

But sooner than I think, our home will be an empty nest.

Yes, it has gone by . . . quickly.

“The days are long, but the years are short”, one wise woman told me once.

I can feel just the slightest feel of remorse and sadness, if I ponder these truths.

“Am I doing the best I can?”

“Have a cherished enough of the moments?”

“Did I miss too many working or in ministry?”

“Should I have . . . ? Could I have . . . ?”

Do any of you feel like this? I haven’t always gotten it right. I have been selfish and had my own agenda. I can look back and think of all the mistakes I have made.

But when I stop and ask God about it, He reminds me they are His children. I have been given them for a season. I will not be perfect, but I am who my children need. I feel more and more these days that parenting is really more about me growing to be more Christ-like than it ever was about raising them up in the first place. God’s got them in the palm of His hand.

For now, I will remember to appreciate the little things, like reading a book to my youngest two before bed. I was consistent with my first two, but with busy days my younger two haven't enjoyed this staple routine. I do know those are moments they will remember. Traditions passed from one generation to the next helps me gather memories, too, like our Advent of Books in December.  

We have a new book coming out next Tuesday that will be great for both of these endeavors - A Royal Christmas to Remember. 

My goal is to be able to look back and not feel guilt. I am the queen of “should haves” my husband says. However, I don’t want to “should” all over myself when my children are grown.

So today – with days I have left - I will take each thought . . . each “guilt thought” . . . every “not good enough” thought and ask the Lord His opinion. If I need to change, He will tell me. If I need to rest or let go, He will tell me. But in every moment, I want to enjoy.

Because the days are long, and the years are short!

What do you do to remember and make memories?

 

 

~Jeanna Young - When Jeanna is not writing, speaking, event planning, or homeschooling, she can be found scrapbooking her life, redecorating her home, loving on her husband, planning fun events for her kids or eating healthy to stay cancer-free!